RTÉ Radio 1 Drama On One

The Ballad of Cain and Abel

Conor Farrington's feisty revisiting of the Genesis story of murder..

Along with two other civilised contrarians who worked in or for Radio Eireann in its heyday –that’s to say, poet Austin Clarke and broadcaster Robert Farren- the late Conor Farrington, actor and author, doggedly continued an age-old, if threatened, tradition in Western drama: that of the verse-play, once a vigorous popular form and now, alas, a protected species with a coterie aura.
Farrington’s fiftieth (and final) work in rhyming couplets is the ingenious BALLAD OF CAIN AND ABEL, a feisty revisiting of the Genesis shaggy-dog story with its mother of all murderers, its two embattled brothers, plus a serpentine python worthy of Monty. The playwright plays God to Frank Kelly’s pain of a Cain,